Saturday, 3 November 2012

Caution: Protect your online identity

We emerge into this world with nothing to hide. But we are born into a complex human society, and it soon forces us to cloak ourselves in secrets. In the 'Real' world we choose to hide many aspects of ourselves from the world: finances or romances, opinions and frustrations, imperfections and bad habits basically any information we believe is sensitive or personal information.The longer our lives, the more private information we accumulate.

Today the internet threatens us to strip us naked. We are broadcasting our most sensitive and important secrets and keeping that information available on the internet which is easily accessible  all. Today internet is collecting picture of our identities and our lives and allows others to aggregate those information. 

Life has changed to a great extent in the 20th century. The internet is filled with the stories of youngsters who “tweet” their lives away, broadcasting their most intimate thoughts, feelings, and circumstances to anyone who will pay attention. The current world of internet is built on the relationships between exhibitionists who will do anything for fame and voyeurs who find their actions fascinating. 

Social media such as “Facebook” “Twitter” rely on their users’ eagerness to share information, both intimate and mundane, in real time. Twitter is a fact-sharing machine, “It is said that you lie to your friends on Facebook and share your secrets to strangers on Twitter.” We must think twice before we share something online to anyone. Current culture is all about flaunting and showing off your gadgets, how many credit cards you carry, how many followers you have on Twitter, how many likes and comments you receive when you post a picture or update your status, how popular you are on social networks, and the Internet is one of its most prominent engines.

We must believe that privacy has value. Privacy protects our families and our peace of mind. Privacy is a strategy for shielding resources from thieves and our children from predators, it is a prudent business tactic for negotiations, and it is an important social tool when meeting new people. 

Our personal information has become a commodity and just who is exposing you online. Social networks like “Facebook” and “Twitter” makes huge profit and their balance sheets are weighed in billions. Have you ever wondered who are their main resources of your income? Their income depend upon how many users are online and how many new users sign up for them daily, weekly, and monthly. It is YOU and your personal information which you share online. Your friends are not the only people examining your Facebook or Twitter page. companies search social networks to screen employment candidates. In fact from estranged friends or relatives to absolute strangers all have a keen eye on your social page. Today even the law has given information a certain evidentiary value. Remember, why your employer warns you on posting your companies private information and even photos of the office events online. It is to prevent any information to leak on-line and avoid any further rumours about companies internal environment. 

Who is exposing you?

You Did It Yourself

The Internet’s function of self-publication has revolutionized the way that humans communicate with each other. If you don’t believe that, spend a day with a teenager and see how she uses Facebook, Twitter, text messaging, instant messaging, to stay in touch with friends both near and far. 

It is time to get dressed now. Identity theft is considered a crime across the world. It could make you bankrupt. Everything is done online now a days. In a fraction of second you can transfer millions across the world via Online Banking transaction. And in other case a fraud can lead you in trouble and your bank balance could be swept away by hackers online. We into banking world asks our customers to be aware of fishing. It is a serious challenge to the cyber world.

Remedies: Follow the billboard rule.


This simple rule, also known as the mom and grand mom rule, requires no software. If you would not want people to drive by your billboard and see something posted there don’t upload it. The minute you feel any hesitation with anything posted remember to pull it down immediately to avoid any further hassle. 

Rest we all are mature enough to differentiate what information to be shared and what shall be kept private. 

Always remember anything in the virtual world is subject to susceptibility.o

Tarique Anwer.


  1. Hi, this is @indialogsin We have started as India's first Question, Poll and Debate site. We do not intend to sell personal information to make money; we never will. There are other avenues to make money, and they are ads. Facebook earns its max share of revenue through this route only. Yes, you are right that Facebook and Twitter expose personal information as these are fact-based sites. Ours is a UGC (User Generated Content) one, and we limit ourselves not to share any personal information, pictures and secrets but views and questions, polls and debates on anything related to India. So, not any social sites are dangerous; it's upon oneself which one and how much to expose!

  2. Good article. There is lot of sociology attached to virtual world. and They are minting money out of this new sociological revolution.

    1. Thank you Nidhi.

      You are right but we must guard ourselves online before it really hurts us in any way.

  3. I am so glad that one of us took up this talk, and discussed about it at length and comprehensively. It was a great read Tarique, at once both informative and engaging. I do see my teenaged cousins spending hours on facebook, uploading stuff without realizing the ramifications of the sensitive content they might post online in a fit of naivity.

    My problem with the virtual world is less philosophical, more emotional. You have pointed it our. Private space is sacred. Unfortunately, our generation forgets any distinction, forgets to understand the sanctity of what is to be cherished in the confines of one's home. There is too much data staring us in the face all the time. More than coping up with it, I feel like shutting myself down sometimes.

    Anyway, looking forward to more great posts from you!

  4. Thank you so much Saumya.
    It really motivates to see this kind of appreciation.

    You're right. This is hight time we realize the negative aspects of Online world. Online security and hacking is going to be the biggest threat to us.

  5. Nicely worded and strong article, esp what we call our GenNext. Hope the social networking sites come up with some more privacy control and govt also enforces a law.